Sagay City, Negros Occidental – The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) recently installed 165 farmers in 105-hectare agricultural land formerly owned by Mirasol Development Corporation in Hda. Lourdes, Brgy. Andres Bonifacio, Sagay City.
Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer Milagros C. Flores said the farmers will initially occupy 29 hectares vacated by the former owner-corporation pending the processing of the certificate of land ownership awards (CLOAs) which are due for registration at the Register of Deeds.
The 105-hectare property was offered by the landowner-corporation for Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) coverage through the voluntary offer to sell (VOS) scheme and is now covered by a Memorandum of Valuation by the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP).
Flores noted that the 165 farmers are members of two organizations of agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARB), the Mirasol Development Corporation Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Association (MDCARBA) with 137 ARB-members, and the Andres Bonifacio Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Association (ABARBA) with 28 ARB-members.
The DAR helped the 137 ARB-members of the MDCARBA organized themselves into cooperatives and developed themselves thru the land tenure improvement-program beneficiaries development Integration approach. At present Php4Million credit line is now available to the members thru DA-DAR-LBP’s Agrarian Reform Credit Program (APCP) and Php500,000 is being used to finance the cultivation of the initial lots provided to the farmers.
Meanwhile Task Force Mapalad (TFM) assisted the 28 ARB-members of ABARBA to avail themselves of credit assistance under APCP and Negros Island Savings Credit Cooperative (NISCO) which offers lowest interest rate of 8.5% per annum and payment terms based on the production cycle of ARBs’ crop.
“The CARP with Extension and Reform (CARPER) does not end with the installation of the ARBs and the distribution of CLOAs but it is rather the start of a vision and a challenge to be able to improve the quality of lives of the ARBs using the newly-awarded lands as your basic resource and by continuously providing support services to the farmers,” Flores said.